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How to safely buy from US companies that won't ship outside the United States

The world is a big place but merchants in the US, like Amazon, Ebay and countless other American companies, do not seem to think so!

They refuse to sell and ship to most countries in the world, with a few exceptions like the UK, Canada, parts of Europe and sometimes Australia.

And it's not just South Africa and other states in Africa that are excluded from their delivery list. Even countries like South Korea face the same problem.

So what's the answer when you want to buy a mint, 1958, M3 Leica, offered at a great price by an Ebay seller in Ohio? Or maybe you want to buy a new lens from an Amazon merchant in New York?

If you're in the market for a commonly available product (a Holga camera or film for example) you can almost always find an alternative supplier, usually in Asia, who is happy to take your money and send you the goods. I've done that on many occasions and never had a bad experience and have also purchased items from Russia with equally good results.

US shipping address

But, if it is a single, specific item on offer, only in the United States, you need to somehow organize an American shipping address and arrange for the goods to be shipped on from there.

It sounds like an awfully large dose of hassle but is, in fact, easy as pie! is the largest and number-one-ranked provider of consolidation services in the world. They ship 50 000 US-purchased products every week for customers in 220 countries.

The process, in a nutshell, is simple. You sign up as a member - there are three different membership options, depending upon your requirements but for most occasional purchasers, the $10 membership option is fine. then allocates you a unique shipping address at their operation in Florida and you're all set to go.

When you make a purchase, you use that address, to which your goods are dispatched. Upon arrival in Florida (and often shipping within the US is free) the items are reshipped using DHL, or other courier services that you can choose and may arrive on your doorstep within one to four days!

And, while it is true a door-to-door courier service is more costly than simply sticking it in the mail, the service guarantees your one-of-a-kind Leica will arrive, clear customs and not be damaged during shipping.

The service works with ANY US company, in fact, will even do the shopping and make payments on your behalf, if that's what you want!

Their website has comprehensive details, useful information and shipping-cost calculators.

 They truly have made the world a global supermarket - maybe it is not so big after all!

Check out's website, sign up and start bargain-hunting in the US.

Note: I have no link or affiliation with whatsoever. I have used their service and recommended it to many friends and colleagues who've all been delighted.

If you buy a book or other product from Amazon, using the links on this page I get a small commission from them. It helps keep this site free and buys me the odd beer. Thank you.